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Theatre News: The Karate Kid, Almost Famous, Joe Papp, Second Stage Theater Adds, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof

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Short Takes: Richard III at The Delacorte Theater will delay its first preview to Tuesday, June 21st.

The Tony and Olivier Award-winning musical Come From Away welcomes original Broadway cast member Jenn Colella back to “The Rock” as ‘Beverley/Annette & others,’ a performance that earned her a 2017 Tony Award nomination and Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Craig Noel, Helen Hayes and Dora Awards, for a strictly limited engagement from Tuesday, June 21 through Sunday, August 7, 2022 at Broadway’s Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre (236 West 45th Street). Sharone Sayegh (The Band’s Visit) will also join the Broadway company direct from the North American Tour on Tuesday, June 21 as ‘Bonnie & others.’

Olivier Award nominee Rachel Tucker will return to the role of ‘Beverley/Annette & others’ on Tuesday, August 9, 2022 and original Broadway cast member Petrina Bromley will return to the role of ‘Bonnie & others’ on Tuesday, September 27, 2022.

One of the shows we are looking forward to is the Pre-Broadway World Premiere of The Karate Kid – The Musical which opened at Stages St. Louis’ Kirkwood Performing Arts Center to a sold-out crowd, including original film cast member Martin Kove who gave a standing ovation after “Strike First. Strike Hard. No Mercy.”

The complete cast includes Jovanni Sy as Mr. Miyagi, John Cardoza as Daniel LaRusso, two-time Tony Award® nominee Kate Baldwin as Lucille LaRusso, Alan H. Green as John Kreese, Jake Bentley Young as Johnny Lawrence, Jetta Juriansz as Ali Mills, and Luis Pablo Garcia as Freddie Fernandez.

The ensemble cast features Manik Anand, Trevor James, Leah Berry, Caitlyn Caughell, Kristina Garvida Doucette, Zachary Downer, Francis Florendo, Kayla Jenerson, Sydney Jones, Josh Hoon Lee, Noah Lentini, Garrick Goce Macatangay, Kelly MacMillan, Abby Matsusaka, Justice Moore, Omar Nieves, Jackson Kanawha Perry, Isidro Rafael, Sangeetha Santhebennur, and Victor Carrillo Tracey.

We are also looking forward to seeing Almost Famous, the new musical with book and lyrics by Academy Award® and Grammy Award® winner Cameron Crowe, based on his iconic film, will open on Broadway this fall. Directed by Tony Award® and Olivier Award® nominee Jeremy Herrin, featuring original music and lyrics by Tony, Grammy, Emmy and Pulitzer Prize Award® winner Tom Kitt, and choreography by Sarah O’Gleby, the production will begin previews on Tuesday, September 13 ahead of an official opening on Tuesday, October 11 at a Shubert theater to be announced.

The production will star Chris Wood, Tony Award® nominee Anika Larsen, Solea Pfeiffer, Drew Gehling and introducing Casey Likes. The company will also include Rob Colletti, Matt Bittner, Chad Burris, Gerard Canonico, Julia Cassandra, Brandon Contreras, Jakeim Hart, Van Hughes, Jana Djenne Jackson, Katie Ladner, Danny Lindgren, Erica Mansfield, Alisa Melendez, Emily Schultheis, Daniel Sovich, Libby Winters, and Matthew C. Yee.

Sony Masterworks Broadway will release the Original Broadway Cast Album of Almost Famous this fall. Listen to the first track “Everybody’s Coming Together” HERE and stay tuned for further song releases in the coming months. An accompanying video created by Cameron Crowe can be found HERE.

The design team for Almost Famous will include two-time Tony Award® and Emmy Award® winner Derek McLane (scenic design), two-time Tony Award® winner David Zinn (costume design), six-time Tony Award® winner Natasha Katz (lighting design), Tony Award®winner Peter Hylenski (sound design), Tom Kitt (orchestrations & arrangements), Bryan Perri (music direction), AnnMarie Milazzo(vocal design), Luc Verschueren (hair, wig, and makeup designer), Lorenzo Pisoni (physical movement coordinator), Jim Carnahan (casting director), Sue Wagner, John Johnson, Jillian Robbins, Devin Keudell (executive producers), and Bespoke Theatricals(general management).  Due to scheduling conflicts, Lorin Latarro has departed the production and will be credited with Additional Choreography for her remaining contributions.

When Almost Famous had its world premiere in Crowe’s hometown of San Diego at The Old Globe where it set the record for the highest-grossing show in the theater’s 90-year history.

Directed, produced, and written by Tracie Holder and Karen Thorsen, American Masters: Joe Papp in Five Acts tells the story of this indomitable, street-wise champion of the arts.As founder of The Public Theater, Free Shakespeare in the Park, and producer of groundbreaking plays like Hair, A Chorus Line, and for colored girls…, Papp believed great art was for everyone.Papp’s stages held up a mirror to society and reflected the reality of people’s lives.

American Masters: Joe Papp in Five Acts premieres nationwide Friday, June 3 at 9PM ET

Airs on PBS (check local listings)

Online at pbs.org/americanmasters

On the PBS Video App

Second Stage Theater has announced two new productions for its upcoming 2022-23 Season.

Tony Award-nominee Bess Wohl will return to the Tony Kiser Theater (305 West 43rd Street) this Fall with the New York premiere of Camp Siegfried, directed by Tony Award-winner David Cromer. Spring 2023 will see the Broadway premiere of Larissa FastHorse’s The Thanksgiving Play, directed by Rachel Chavkin at the Hayes Theater (240 West 44th Street). With this production, Ms. FastHorse will be the first female Native American playwright produced on Broadway.

These productions join the previously announced Broadway premiere of Stephen Adly Guirgis’ Pulitzer Prize-winner Between Riverside And Crazy, directed by Austin Pendleton, which will run at the Hayes Theater this Fall. Additional programming for the season is to be announced.

Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, in a new production by Ruth Stage (www.RuthStage.org), will play The Theater at St. Clements (423 W. 46th Street) beginning previews July 15, and opening night is set for July 24. The original scheduled run of this production, which had been announced for January, 2022, was postponed due to the ongoing health crisis. Directed by Joe Rosario (Flowers for Algernon), this is the first production of the Tennessee Williams play that his estate has allowed to be produced Off-Broadway.
Premiering on Broadway in 1955 (and winning the Pulitzer Prize), Cat On A Hot Tin Roof has been revived five times on the main stem and was made into a film in 1958 starring Elizabeth Taylor as Maggie and Paul Newman as Brick.
The cast of Cat On A Hot Tin Roof includes: Sonoya Mizuno (HBO’s House of the Dragon; Crazy Rich Asians) as Maggie in her New York stage debut, Matt de Rogatis(Lone Star) as Brick, Christian Jules Le Blanc (3 Time Daytime Emmy Award Winner for The Young and the Restless) as Big Daddy,  Alison Fraser (2 Time Tony Award nominee; The Secret Garden; Romance / Romance) as Big Mama, Spencer Scott(The Glass Menagerie) as Gooper, Tiffan Borelli (Million Dollar Quartet) as Mae, Jim Kempner (Red) as Doc Baugh, Milton Elliott (Biloxi Blues) as Rev. Tooker and Carly Gold (The Ferryman) as The No Neck Monsters. Austin Pendleton (A Beautiful Mind) will be joining the company as Doc Baugh on July 25th.

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

Broadway

Drama Desk Awards Backstage In The Press Room

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T2C was backstage at the Drama Desk Awards last night. Here is a look at the action.

First in the room:

Kara Young

Celia Keenan-Bolger

Celia Keenan-Bolger and Jessica Lange

Jessica Lange

Sarah Paulson

The Cast of Stereophonic-Will Brill, Sarah Pidgeon, Juliana Canfield, Andrew R. Butler, Tom Pecinka, Chris Stack and Eli Gelb

Nikiya Mathis

JR Goodman, Ray Wetmore and Camille Labarre

Nikki M. James

Patrick Page

Enver Chakartash

Paul Tazewell

Cole Escola

How to Dance in Ohio cast members that includes-Liz Weber, Jeremy Wein, Ava Xiao-Lin Rigelhaupt, Nicole D’Angelo and Becky Leifman

Paul Tate dePoo

Avran Mlotek, Motl Didner, Dominick Balletta and Zalem Miotek

Jane Cox

Brian MacDevitt

Brian MacDevitt and Jane Cox

Isabella Byrd

Ryan Rumery

Walter Trarbach, Cody Spencer and Kai Harada

David Yazbek

Itamar Moses

Lady Irene Gandy

Nathan Lane and Matthew Broderick

Matthew Broderick

Nathan Lane

Will Butler

Marco Paguia

Shaina Taub

Justin Peck

Daniel Aukin

Jessica Stone

Corbin Bleu and Sarah Hyland

Andre Bishop and James Lapine

Keisha Lewis

Maleah Joi Moon, Brian d’Arcy James and Kelli O’Hara

Maleah Joi Moon

Keisha Lewis and Maleah Joi Moon

Kelli O’Hara

Brian d’Arcy James

Peter Nigrini

Carole Rothman and Branden Jacobs-Jenkins

Amy Herzog

David Adjmi

Adam Greenfield, David Adjmi

Sarah Hyland and Debra Messing

 

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The 2024 Winner’s Of The Drama Desk Awards The Red Carpet

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The 2024 Annual Drama Desk Awards were announced last night at NYU Skirball Center. Tony Award Winners Sutton Foster and Aaron Tveit hosted the ceremony.

Sutton Foster and Aaron Tveit

Aaron Tveit

Sutton Foster

T2C was on the red carpet.

Andrew Durand

Jeff Kuperman and Rick Kuperman

William Jackson Harper

Shaina Taub

Peter Nigrini

Kecia Lewis

Celia Keenan-Bolger

Jocelyn Bioh

Laura Benanti

Jesse Robb and Shana Carroll

Jessica Lange

Camille Labarre, Ray Wetmore and JR Goodman

Michael Starobin, Andrea Grody and Shaina Taub

Will Brill

Sarah Paulson

Richard Ridge

Sarah Hyland

Maleah Joi Moon

Patrick Paige

Brooke Shields

Brooke Shields, Maleah Joi Moon

Brian D’Arcy James

Will Keen

Michael Stuhlbarg, Will Keen

Mary Louise Burke

Isabella Byrd

Justin Peck

Kara Young

Marco Paguia

Miss New York Rachelle diStasio

Josh Breckenridge

Lorin Latarro

Ricky Ubeda

Glauco Araujo

Dorian Harewood and Nancy Harewood

Mark Williams

Brody Grant

The Cast of Stereophonic-Andrew R. Butler, Will Brill, Tom Pecinka, Juliana Canfield, Eli Gelb, Chris Stack and Sarah Pidgeon

Paige Davis and Patrick Page

James Monroe Iglehart

Sarah Pidgeon

Nikiya Mathis

Montego Glover

Cole Escola

Tom Pecinka

Chris Stack

Leslie Kritzer

Miriam Silverman

Andrew R. Butler

Pat Swinney Commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment with Juliana Canfield

Juliana Canfield

Enver Chakartash

Robert Pickens and Katie Geil

Will Butler

David Adjmi

Daisy Prince

Debra Messing

Lena Hall

Debra Messing

Nikki M. James

Michael Stuhlbarg

Paul Tazewell

Camille A. Brown

Marin Ireland

How To Dance in Ohio-Liz Weber, Jeremy Wein, Ava Xiao-Lin Rigelhaupt, Nicole D’Angelo and Becky Leifman

Jacob Karr

Dylis Croman and Robert Montano

Eli Gelb

Walter Trarbach

Steven Valentine

Peter Charney and Brendan George

Rebecca Frecknall

Lady Irene Gandy

Timo Andres

 

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Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth

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The Broadway League’s Black to Broadway initiative announces the performers for this year’s Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth concert taking place in Times Square on Wednesday, June 19th from 11:00am – 12:30pm (rain or shine).

Michael James Scott

Michael James Scott will host. Flagstar Bank will be this year’s presenting sponsor.

Phylicia Rashad

The 2024 Juneteenth Legacy Award will be presented to two-time Tony Award winner Phylicia Rashad, a versatile performer, director, educator, and humanitarian who has delighted generations of audiences through her work in beloved roles both in theatre and on screen. As an actress, Ms. Rashad has won two Tony Awards, for A Raisin in the Sun (2004 Best Actress in a Play) and Skeleton Crew (2022 Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play). She was also a 2005 Best Actress in a Play nominee for Gem of the Ocean. As a producer, Ms. Rashad recently received a Best Revival of a Play nomination for Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch.

The fourth annual Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth concert features more than 35 performers from the following 17 Broadway shows: Aladdin; & Juliet; Back to the Future: The Musical; Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club; Chicago; Harry Potter and the Cursed Child; The Heart of Rock and Roll; Hell’s Kitchen; Illinoise; The Lion King; MJ; Moulin Rouge! The Musical;The Notebook; Suffs; Water for Elephants; The Who’s Tommy; The Wiz; and the return of the kids of Young Gifted and Broadway. All performances will be accompanied by live music thanks to The Music Performance Trust Fund and the Film Funds. American Sign Language interpretation will be provided.

The exciting line-up of Broadway stars set to perform includes: Blu Allen, Donovan Louis Bazemore, Jace Bentley, Ronnie S. Bowman Jr., Maya Boyd, Tsilala Brock, Max Chambers, Taylor Colleton, Jay Copeland, Lorna Courtney, Charity Angél Dawson, Mariama Diop, Desmond Sean Ellington, Will Ervin Jr., Jerome Hermann-Hardeman, Dorian Harewood, Jackson Hayes, Najah Hetsberger, Afra Hines, Manny Houston, Jaylen Lyndon Hunter, Bre Jackson, Polanco Jones Jr., John-Michael Lyles, Mehret Marsh, Deja McNair, Alex Newell, Veronica Otim, Cristina Rae, Jelani Remy, William Rhem Jr., Albert Rhodes Jr., Walter Russell III, Antoine L. Smith, Nia Thompson, Lamont Walker II, Rachel Webb, NaTasha Yvette Williams, and Hailee Kaleem Wright.

Joining The Broadway League in partnership for Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth are Black Theatre United (BTU), Black Theatre Coalition (BTC), The New York Times, and the Times Square Alliance. Black Theatre United has curated a selection of Black-owned restaurants to take part in the celebration by selling food and treats to attendees. Kokomo, LaMode BK, and Brooklyn Sweet Spot will be on-site with a selection of delicious options to add to the festivity.

Flagstar Bank is the 2024 presenting sponsor of Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth. Other sponsors include: The Music Performance Trust Fund and Film Funds; the NYC Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment; Audience Rewards; Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS; Broadway.com; M·A·C Cosmetics; TodayTix; Playbill; The Araca Group; and Open Jar Studios.

The creative and production teams of Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth include Director and Writer Steve H. Broadnax III, Music Director Rashad McPherson, Executive Producers Brian Anthony Moreland and Aaliytha Stevens, Stage Manager Monet Thibou, and General Manager Devon Miller of Foresight Theatrical.

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The 2024 Winner’s Of The Drama Desk Awards With Interviews

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Photo Aaron Tveit and Sutton Foster Photo by Genevieve Rafter Keddy

The 2024 Drama Desk Awards were a star-studded ceremony at NYU Skirball Center co-hosted by Sutton Foster and Aaron Tveit. This is the only major NYC theater awards for which Broadway, Off-Broadway, and Off-Off-Broadway productions are considered in the same categories. Two recipients in each of the gender-free performance categories were announced and in some categories not only were their ties but three winners selected.

The winners are:

Outstanding Play: Stereophonic, by David Adjmi, Playwrights Horizons

Outstanding Musical: Dead Outlaw

Outstanding Revival of a Play: Appropriate, Second Stage Theater

Outstanding Revival of a Musical: I Can Get It for You Wholesale, Classic Stage Company


Outstanding Lead Performance in a Play:
Jessica Lange, Mother Play, Second Stage Theater

and Sarah Paulson, Appropriate, Second Stage Theater

Outstanding Lead Performance in a Musical: Brian d’Arcy James, Days of Wine and Roses, Atlantic Theater Company, Maleah Joi Moon, Hell’s Kitchen and Kelli O’Hara, Days of Wine and Roses, Atlantic Theater Company


Outstanding Featured Performance in a Play:
Celia Keenan-Bolger, Mother Play, Second Stage Theater and Kara Young, Purlie Victorious: A Non-Confederate Romp Through the Cotton Patch

Outstanding Featured Performance in a Musical: Kecia Lewis, Hell’s Kitchen and Bebe Neuwirth, Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club


Outstanding Direction of a Play:
Daniel Aukin, Stereophonic, Playwrights Horizons


Outstanding Direction of a Musical:
Jessica Stone, Water for Elephants

Outstanding Choreography: Justin Peck, Illinoise, Park Avenue Armory


Outstanding Music:
Shaina Taub, Suffs

Outstanding Lyrics: David Yazbek and Erik Della Penna, Dead Outlaw

Outstanding Book of a Musical: Itamar Moses, Dead Outlaw

Outstanding Orchestrations: Marco Paguia, Buena Vista Social Club, Atlantic Theater Company


Outstanding Music in a Play:
Will Butler, Stereophonic, Playwrights Horizons

Outstanding Revue: Amid Falling Walls, National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene

Outstanding Scenic Design of a Play: David Zinn, Stereophonic, Playwrights Horizons

Outstanding Scenic Design of a Musical: Paul Tate DePoo III, The Great Gatsby (includes projections)


Outstanding Costume Design of a Play:
Enver Chakartash, Stereophonic, Playwrights Horizons


Outstanding Costume Design of a Musical:
Paul Tazewell, Suffs

Outstanding Lighting Design of a Play: Jane Cox, Appropriate, Second Stage Theater


Outstanding Lighting Design of a Musical:
Brian MacDevitt and Hana S. Kim (projections), The Outsiders

Outstanding Projection and Video Design: Peter Nigrini,Hell’s Kitc

Outstanding Sound Design of a Play: Ryan Rumery, Stereophonic, Playwrights Horizons


Outstanding Sound Design of a Musical:
Nick Lidster for Autograph, Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club, Cody Spencer, The Outsiders and Walter Trarbach, Water for Elephants


Outstanding Wig and Hair:
Nikiya Mathis, Jaja’s African Hair Braiding, Manhattan Theatre Club


Outstanding Solo Performance:
Patrick Page, All the Devils Are Here: How Shakespeare Invented the Villain

Unique Theatrical Experience: Grenfell: in the words of survivors, St. Ann’s Warehouse, National Theatre, and KPPL Productions

Outstanding Fight Choreography: Cha Ramos, Water for Elephants

Outstanding Adaptation: An Enemy of the People, by Amy Herzog


Outstanding Puppetry:
Ray Wetmore, JR Goodman, and Camille Labarre, Water for Elephants

SPECIAL AWARDS

Ensemble Award

The cast of Stereophonic – Will Brill, Andrew R. Butler, Juliana Canfield, Eli Gelb, Tom Pecinka, Sarah Pidgeon, and Chris Stack – who execute David Adjmi’s hypernaturalistic text with extraordinary care and precision, while also performing Will Butler’s music with the freshness and life that makes us believe we are witnessing, first-hand, the creation of a new American classic.


‘Sam Norkin Off-Broadway Award

Cole Escola, who both wrote and stars in one of this season’s biggest hits Off Broadway, Oh, Mary! Following in the long legacy of queer artists who write themselves into American history, Escola’s new “gay fantasia on national themes” is a hilarious reminder of why we must continue to interrogate our past.

ADDITIONAL SPECIAL AWARDS

How to Dance in Ohio Authentic Autistic Representation Team – Sammi Cannold, Nicole D’Angelo, Becky Leifman, Ava Xiao-Lin Rigelhaupt, Liz Weber, and Jeremy Wein  – for their steadfast support of autistic theatermakers, and their strides toward true accessibility for neurodiverse individuals both on and offstage.


Lighting designer Isabella Byrd, whose self-described technique as a “darkness designer” has earned her a cache of nominations and awards in the United States and abroad. During this season, Byrd illuminated two Broadway shows done in the round, An Enemy of the People and Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club. Off Broadway, her spotlight on quiet, small-scale stories both enchanted us in Primary Trust and mesmerized us in Infinite Life, with a parking-lot sky that marked the passage of time.


Lady Irene Gandy, for career achievement. A press agent extraordinaire for over five decades, Lady Irene has always demonstrated her passion, dedication, and love for theater. A Broadway producer and Sardi’s honoree, she is a zealous advocate for inclusion, diversity, and equity in the arts.

 

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Broadway

Ken Fallin’s Broadway: Bernadette, Angela, Ethel and Patti

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Gypsy turned 65 on May 21, and soon Audra mcDonald will take over the role. Let’s look at the other Mama Rose’s. Ethel Merman originated the character at the Broadway Theatre in 1959, and received a Tony nomination for her performance.

Patti LuPone last Rose, took home the 2008 Tony for her turn.

Angela Lansbury took on Rose in the 1973 London revival of Gypsy, which later transferred to Broadway in 1974. She was the first Rose to win a Tony Award for her performance.

Bernadette Peters took on Rose in the 2003 Broadway revival and received a Tony nomination for her perofrmance. At the 57th annual Tony Awards, she sang “Rose’s Turn.”

Bette Midler played Mama in the 1993 television adaptation of Gypsy and Barbra Streisand played the role on the big screen.

Looking forward to the next incarnation.

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